Lydia Davis (born 1947) is a contemporary American author and translator of French literature. She has published six collections of short stories, including The Thirteenth Woman and Other Stories (1976) and Break It Down (1986). Her most recent collection is Varieties of Disturbance, published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux in 2007. Her stories are acclaimed for their brevity and humour. Many are only one or two sentences. In fact some of her stories are considered poetry or somewhere between philosophy, poetry and short story.
Davis has also translated Proust, Blanchot, Foucault, Michel Leiris, and other French writers.
In October 2003 Davis received the coveted MacArthur Genius award for Writing.
She is a professor of creative writing at University at Albany, SUNY.